Mountain Journeys

Rock climbing holiday, Lake District

With a few free days and a friend from Bristol visiting, we had to take the opportunity for some 'hot rock' sunshine climbing here in the Lake District.
Whilst Kim is a highly accomplished climber, having climbed all over the world, the Lakes is still new for her. When the sun shines it's hard to imagine a better place anywhere in the world than the magnificent Lake District.

We started easy at the classic roadside venue of Raven crag in Langdale. This is just a few minutes walk from The Old Dungeon Ghyll and offers many fine multi-pitch climbs on excellent volcanic rock. We climbed Original Route. Due to a late afternoon start we decided to leave it at that today.

On Wednesday, day 2, we tried out Snail Shell Crag in the North Lakes. This can be found on the Eastern slopes of Carrock fell and the rock is a little different from most Lakeland venues, it's a Gabbro intrusion. This means it's super rough and friction is quite unbelievable, stick to it like glue! We managed 9 routes here, which is all the routes that were clean.

Day 3 brought more multi-pitch adventures. Firstly at the small and convenient Raven crag, Walthwaite where we climbed the classic 'Route 2'. A brilliant Hard Severe that is sustained throughout its length. We then moved up the valley to the more atmospheric venue of White Ghyll for some 'white fright' action!
Starting with the 3 star 'Slip Knot' and finishing with 'Inferno' this was a very productive mission. And by leaving our visit until the afternoon we benefitted from maximum sunshine on the rock, and on us!

To round off Kim's stay here in the Lakes, I saved the best until last. Gimmer crag, perched high above the Langdale valley commanding spectacular views and quite Alpinesque in its situation, is without any doubt the finest of Langdale crags, if not all of England & Wales.
The walk up to it is only an hour and pretty easy going, with an ever changing and beautiful view to distract from the uphill motion!
We began with the classic rock route of 'Ash tree slabs' but tried a variant of it, the 'super direct' which is significantly more difficult. It was a pleasant alternative start, but no better than the original.
After lunch we went on to climb 'Asterisk' which had been on my 'to-do' list for ages, so was very nice to get this one done. What was it like? Absolutely brilliant, like most routes on Gimmer then, because they're mostly brilliant, apart from 'F route' that is, that one is 'Fantastic'!

With a long drive south ahead, Kim was keen to leave quite early, so we called it a day after those routes and enjoyed a pleasant amble back to the New Dungeon Ghyll.

A fantastic few days on the Lakeland crags. If you're planning a trip, or would like to be shown some of the finest crags the Lakes has to offer, get in touch anytime. Whether you're new to climbing or been climbing years, we can put together a trip that's right for you.

Mark

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